UMKC Innovation Center partners with the university and the community to spark and sustain entrepreneurial efforts within our region and across the country.

KCSourceLink connects KC entrepreneurs to the right resource at the right time.

MOSourceLink connects Missouri entrepreneurs to the right resource at the right time.

Whiteboard2Boardroom connects entrepreneurs and businesses to technologies available for licensing.

Digital Sandbox KC provides early-stage proof-of-concept support for digital products.

Missouri Small Business & Technology Development Center provides technical assistance to startup and existing businesses.

ScaleUP! Kansas City helps businesses with revenues around $200K scale toward their first $1 million.

Missouri Procurement Technical Assistance Centers helps local businesses obtain government contracts.

KCInvestED helps investors learn more about investing in KC startups.

SourceLink® helps communities nationwide build vibrant and vital entrepreneurial ecosystems.
UMKC Innovation Center
UMKC Innovation Center
Shop Local KC

Main Street Businesses: Attract Holiday Shoppers with #ShopLocalKC

Main Street Businesses: Attract Holiday Shoppers with #ShopLocalKC
With the holiday shopping season upon us, it’s vital, now more than ever, to encourage everyone to shop local to fully maximize the economic impact on local communities. This year, shoppers are expected to spend an average $935.58 this holiday shopping season. Ensure you are receiving your slice of the holiday money pie.

Why does it matter if shoppers spend their money at a locally owned business as opposed to a big-box retailer? Isn’t all money spent in a community essentially good money?

Nope. Let’s break it down.

Not only do small businesses outnumber large corporations and make up for more than half of the nation’s jobs, they also generate 70 percent more local economic activity per square foot than big box retail. It’s simple. Money spent locally, stays locally. It all makes up this amazing entrepreneurial ecosystem that we’re trying so hard to support and grow.

Maria Meyers defines Main Street entrepreneurs as business owners who have physical brick-and-mortar businesses like hair salons, grocery stores, coffee shops or clothing boutiques. Main Street entrepreneurs support the local economy by strengthening partnerships among small businesses and community organizations.

According to the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, businesses who participated in a “Buy Local” campaign reported an average revenue growth of 8.6 percent compared to 3.4 percent for those who did not participate.

Here are a few ways to help your business leverage the holiday shopping season to you and your community’s advantage.

Connect and promote your Main Street business through a Shop Local campaign.

Forget about Black Friday. In 2010, American Express started an awesome campaign geared toward small business owners called Small Business Saturday to focus on shopping local the Saturday after Black Friday.

Shoppers are encouraged to shop local and become “neighborhood champions” by hosting welcome stations in their local shopping districts while business owners can download free marketing materials. Mark your calendar for November 26.

Participate in Small Business Saturday by using the hashtags #SmallBizSat and #ShopSmall.



Take your shop local campaign a step further and get on our Shop Local map.

Did you know that we created an entire #ShopLocalKC campaign around Kansas City’s locally owned businesses with a ShopLocal Map? With more than 150 local businesses listed and highlighted on an interactive map, shoppers can filter businesses by type, zip code and distance. Get in on the fun by submitting your own business to be listed.

Here are a few more quick ways to encourage local spending this holiday season (and beyond).

●     Amp up your social media channels to spread the word about your sales or special promos. Spend a few dollars on some Facebook advertising.

●     Create or update your Google business listing so shoppers can find you while they’re out and about in Kansas City.

Showcase your business and support local entrepreneurship by using the hashtag #ShopLocalKC.

For more resources to start or grow your business, check out our Resource Navigator, our interactive database that will connect you to the right resources your challenge, industry and business stage. Give us a call at 816.235.6500 and we’ll guide you to the right resources for your business.

This post was written by Lauren Caldwell, wordsmith, social media nerd and KCSourceLink's communications specialist



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